Chaplain's Corner - Mount Vernon Chapter of MOAA

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Chaplain's Corner

Chaplain's Corner


This page is dedicated to our Mount Vernon Chapter Chaplain Edwin (Arnie) Porter, Colonel, USAF, Ret. and his always memorable Banquet Prayers.




  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 1/20/2016


LORD, PROTECT US FROM RETIREMENT
Never let us be completely defined in terms of what we used to be or do.  
We are proud to be retired officers,
but we are not just retired officers.
Help us to know, Lord, that we exist in many ways.
For many years we were officers on active duty. Now, by the grace of God (and Congress ) we are retired officers.
Now also, many of us are fathers or mothers, grandfathers or grandmothers, sisters or brothers, wives or
husbands, friends, board members, consultants, sailors, cooks, wood workers, rotten auto mechanics.
Help us to know, Lord, that all of us share the responsibility to be your servants, a task from which we may never
resign or retire.
Help us to know, Lord, gratitude for what we have been, for what we are now, and for what we might become.  
Amen.


  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 11/19/2015


MV/MOAA  Grace

Oh  God, as we give thanks this evening for food and shelter and security and all  our many blessings, we pray for the people of Paris. Comfort them and strengthen  them, Oh Lord, in their time of unexpected war. In our town, comfort,  strengthen, and empower those in Homeland Security, that we may not suffer a  similar event.
As  we prepare for our day of national thanksgiving help us take to heart the words  of that 12th century mystic priest, Meister Eckhart, who wrote,  "If  the  only prayer you ever say in  your entire life is thank  you,  it will  be  enough."  Amen



  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 10/21/2015


Oh lord at the beginning of our time together we pause  to give thanks for food and shelter, love and laughter, political and religious  freedom, and all the blessings you have given us.
When we  celebrate Halloween, a pagan holiday, we pray for all the little creatures  begging for candy at our doors. May they be grateful for what we give  them.
When we celebrate All Hallows Eve, a religious holiday,  we pray for the spirits of those who have gone before us. May we be grateful for  what they gave us.

And since, at election time, we  face an array of issues on which reasonable persons may reach reasonably  different conclusions, let us remember the words of St. Thomas Moore written in  1516.

A-----It should be lawful for every man to do the best he  could to bring others to his opinion, so that he did it peaceably. gently,  quietly and soberly without hasty and contentious rebuking and inveighing  against others---@

And  last, Oh Lord, forgive us our  emails, as we forgive those who email against us.
Amen



  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 05/20/2015


Memorial day Prayer, used first in Hawaii at a TROA Memorial Service at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific


WE FEEL A GREAT DEBT TO THOSE WHO REST HERE, LORD, for no matter what we have done in the service of our country we are filled with humility and admiration for the greater courage we see all around us.

We have come from many places and many backgrounds, but all of us are aware at this moment that we are all your children, your American Children, who have come together to remember.

We are dependent upon the sacrifices of all the men and women who rest here for the existence of our nation, its rare freedoms and our own lives.

We ask now for your comfort for those who still grieve for those who fell in their country=s services.

May we never forget to honor their memory, and may we as a nation live forever for the ideals for which they died,

Amen

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 04/15/2015


Places


LORD,  AS SPRING COMES, FOR THE BEAUTY AND THE BOUNTY

of the earth we give thanks.

We have eaten Danish pastry in Denmark, calamari in California,, kimchi in Korea, seafood in Spain. tacos in Texas, and weiner schnitzel in Vienna.   

And, Lord, we have lived in all those places and more, throughout your world.  While we confess we have had varying degrees of enthusiasm for various places, with your help we have come to realize it is not so much where we live, but how we live that matters.

Grant that we may be like St. Paul, who learned, Ain whatsoever state I am, therein to be content.@

Therefore, Lord, we thank you for the places and the foods of our lives, and especially for this place and this food tonight.
Amen

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 11-19-2014


LORD, AS THE THANKSGIVING SEASON COMES

upon us, tonight we offer thanks in response to things we never asked for;

Places we didn't want to go to, that freed us from provincialism and prejudice;

Separations from spouse and children, which gave them relief,

and freedom to grow out from under our shadow;

Supervisors we didn't like, who trained us in patience and cunning;

Traveling in harms way, which forced us to learn discipline, teamwork and prayer.

Also, Lord, we offer thanks because we have received answers to our prayers for food and shelter, political and religious freedom, and the blessing of your presence at this celebration tonight.

So, for all your gifts, asked and unasked, we are grateful.

Amen.


  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 10-15-2014


LORD, WE THANK YOU FOR ALL THAT HAS COME

from your hand.

We are grateful for the past, wherein we have

traveled to far lands,

served in a great cause,

and, for the most part, stayed out of trouble.

We are grateful for the future, wherein we may

continue in a different kind of service.

not tell the same stories too often,

and resist the urge to give advice.

We are grateful, most of all, for the present, wherein we

pray your protection on those in harm’s way of war or Ebola,

remember Columbus and pray for a world not only new but better,

at Halloween may we be grateful for ancestors, rather than fearful,

give thanks for food and drink this night with friends and loved ones,

And remember, All good things come from thee, oh Lord.

Amen.

 

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 9-17-2014


Hands

OH GOD, WE HAVE COME TOGETHER TO ENJOY

each other's company and this delicious meal.

On this evening we are once again a military community, finally a unified force, a little like a family gathering.

So as we sit around these tables we ask your blessing on us, on the hands which prepared this food and on those who serve it, for we are all your children.

Amen.

--Dorothy Porter



  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 6-18-2014


In recognition of our speaker’s subject tonight (LTC Charles Stein - The Holocaust) I will use a prayer written for Yom HaShoah (Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day) by Lord Jonathan Sacks, Chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Commonwealth for many years until his death last year. He was also a member of the House of Lords.

Let us pray.

“Today on Yom HaShoah, we remember the victims of the greatest crime of man against man--- the young, the old, the innocent, the million and a half children, starved, shot, given lethal injection, gassed, burned and turned to ash, because they were deemed guilty of the crime of being different.

We remember what happens when hate takes hold of the human heart and turns it to stone; what happens when victims cry for help and there is no one listening; what happens when humanity fails to recognize  that those who are not in our image are none the less in God’s image.

We remember and pay tribute to the survivors, who bore witness to what happened, and to the victims, so that, robbed of their lies, they would not be robbed of their deaths.

We remember and give thanks for the righteous of the nations who saved lives, often at risk of their own, teaching us how in the darkest night we can light a candle of hope.

Today, we call on You, Almighty God, to help us hear your voice that says in every generation:

Do not murder.

Do not stand idly by the blood of your neighbor.

Do not oppress the stranger,

We know that whilst we do not have the ability to change the past, we can change the future.

We know that whilst we cannot bring the dead back to life, we can ensues their memories live on and that their deaths were not in vain.

And so, on this Yom HaShoah, we commit ourselves to one simple act, Yizkor, Remember.

May the souls of the victims be bound in the bond of everlasting life.

Amen”

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 5-21-2014 In honor of Memorial Day


Hawaii, Memorial Service, first used in 1988 at a TROA National convention at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific

WE FEEL A GREAT DEBT TO THOSE WHO REST HERE, LORD, for no matter what we have done in the service of our country we are filled with humility and admiration for the greater courage we see all around us.
We have come from many places and many backgrounds, but all of us are aware at this moment that we are all your children, your American Children, who have come together to remember.
We are dependent upon the sacrifices of all the men and women who rest here, for the existence of our nation, its rare freedoms and our own lives.
We ask now for your comfort for those who still grieve for those who fell in their country's services.
May we never forget to honor their memory, and may we as a nation live forever for the ideals for which they died,

Amen.

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 4-16-2014


Calculation

LORD, AS THE SUMMER BRINGS THE TOURISTS
to Washington, D. C., protect us from all photographers;
Those who want to pose themselves, and those who want to pose--us.
Those with a thousand shots determined to make us see them all,
and those with giant camcorders determined to make the whole world smile.
Help us Lord, to accept life's pleasures in full measure without fretting about a lens setting.
Help us enjoy laughter without trying to record it.
Help us enjoy food without demanding a recipe.
Help us enjoy wine without knowing its year.
Help us enjoy what comes without so much calculation.
If we cannot , as the Bible says, "Take no thought for the morrow,and
help us, so we might at least take somewhat less thought,
and still be thankful for what we have,
especially the food and drink and company we share tonight.
Amen

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 3-19-2014


Lord, we are sick of snow.
Lord, we are sick of missing airplanes.
Lord. we are sick of Crimea.
Lord, we are sick of politics.
Lord, most of us are sick with illnesses of varying importance.
Lord, in our sickness we turn to you as the great physician.
We pray, make us well, or at least, a little bit better.
We pray, give us courage, or at least, endurance.
We pray give us patience, or at least, a little less impatience.
We pray, give us this day our daily bread, and at least, a little wine.
We pray, we might know:
you are the creator of the world,
you are our creator, and, best of all,
you love us.
And so, even though we are sick, we give thanks.
Amen

  • Banquet Prayer, Mt Vernon Chapter, MOAA, 2-19-2014


St. Valentine
LORD, WE ARE CONTINUALLY SURROUNDED
by examples of your love for everyone.
And we are grateful that we can gather here tonight to enjoy what comes from your hands, food and drink and pleasure in the company of friends and loved ones.
So, Lord, protect us from taking love for granted.
Protect us from thinking that a prayer at an occasional banquet is, by itself, an adequate expression of gratitude for all your love.
An especially now, protect us from St Valentine and his followers who (it seems) would have us believe love need only be expressed once a year with a silly card or a box of chocolates.
Amen.


May be used or adapted for public occasions or private meditation



 
Dedicated to General George Washingtion
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